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Sports World News of Wednesday, 1 February 2017


El Hadary happy to play elder statesman

Egyptian goalkeeper Essam El Hadary won his first Afcon title in 1998 when his current teammate Ramadhan Sobhi was one year old.
His incredible journey to the high echelons of African football has seen him play with up to four generations of players at both club and national team level.

“Ramadan Sobhi is almost the same age as my daughter but I treat all my teammates as brothers and I treat him just like a teammate,” explained El Hadary.

El Hadary is the only man standing from the squad that defeated South Africa in the Afcon 1998 final in Burkina Faso and when he faces the Etalons on Wednesday in the semifinal, he will be looking to set up a date in the final with his eyes on a personal record fifth Afcon title.

“It is different generations however each generation has its own personality and character. I have won four Afcon titles with the past generations because we grew up and started young together and achieved four titles.”

“However, with this new generation they have not experienced an Afcon title. I always tell them stories and how we managed to do it.” With will, determination and stamina we have reached this stage. Together as a team we shall manage to win the trophy and the journey begins against Burkina Faso.”

El Hadary is yet to concede a goal at Afcon 2017 and will be looking to maintain this record until the final and hopes ultimately that Egypt win their record eighth titl